By Musa Adamu
Peeved by total absence of banking facility in Toto Local Government Council in Nasarawa state, a Member of House of Representatives, representing Nasarawa/Toto federal constituency, Hon. Mohammed Ja’afaru Ibrahim, has revealed what he was doing to address the situation.
Ja’afaru who said the lack of a single Bbank in the entire local government had led to financial exclusion of the people and placed them on socioeconomic disadvantage, revealed that he had taken up the challenge to establish a Micro-Finance Bank in the area to serve the people.
He said the Bank would commence operation as soon as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) grants its approval.
The Lawmaker spoke at the 2017 annual Irewha Hunting festival in Shafa Abakpa in Toto LGC of Nasarawa state.
He said: “As you all know, lack of banking facilities means financial exclusion of the entire community and financial exclusion breeds nothing but poverty. This is because the social and other poverty alleviation programmes of the federal and state governments cannot be effectively implemented here.
“We have taken up the challenge to establish a Micro-Finance Bank in Toto to serve our people. The building is completed, furnished and ready for operation but we have been waiting for the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria since March this year (2017).”
He also revealed that in his less than two years stay in the green chamber, he had commenced moves to address lack of industry or any activity that requires power in the area.
He informed that in collaboration with relevant federal government agency, he had reawakened the over 20 years contract for the electrification of the area.
He said though, there were some challenges ranging from vandalism of cables and contractual issues bedeviling the project at the moment which had stopped its progress, the government agency in-charge of the project was working hard on the resolution of the issues.
“Following my election into the House of Representatives in June, 2016, I took up the issue with the relevant federal government agency.
Consequently, work commenced and installation of poles and conductors between Gadabuke and Toto segment were completed. While work was going on the Gadabuke – Toto segment, vandalism took place between Gadabuke and Nasarawa.
In the course of this, large quantity of cables (conductors) and other accessories were stolen after the vandals had pulled down many concrete poles.
“Fortunately, with the support of some patriotic individuals and security agencies, a number of the vandals and their customers, who bought the stolen items were arrested and are currently being prosecuted. As a result of this action, vandalism may have stopped but I still maintain some members of the vigilante group to keep the vandals at bay.”